AT&T and Verizon, with their insistence on locked bootloaders for Android devices, are the scourge of the Android customization scene. Unfortunately they're also the largest carriers in the United States, which leaves a lot of Android power users in a pickle. If you're on either carrier and rocking a branded Galaxy S5, today is your lucky day: someone's gone and made a near-universal and amazingly simple root method that should work for the S5 (and more) on both carriers.
AT&T needs more of your money, so the wireless carrier is bumping up the activation fee it charges customers who sign a two-year contract. The fee, which formerly sat at $36, has risen $4 to reach a round $40 as of June 8th. The minor price hike applies to upgrades as well.
The change comes as a result of consumers increasingly choosing to pass on traditional contracts in favor of the AT&T Next upgrade program.
It seems like everyone is making smartphone screens more useful when they're off, and LG's attempt is called Knock Code. This feature lets you securely wake and unlock the device with a series of taps on the screen while the phone is asleep. No need to buy a new phone, though. Knock Code is rolling out the the AT&T LG G2 via an OTA update right now.
Samsung Galaxy Mega owners have probably felt a little bit ignored while they've watched one Samsung phone after another getting updates. After all, they only made it to Android 4.2.2 at the end of November, a month after KitKat was announced. They can finally say that they're running the latest version of Android (if we pretend that 4.4.3 didn't just come out). Starting today, an update to Android 4.4.2 will begin rolling out to the Galaxy Mega on AT&T.
If you're thinking about switching to AT&T or opening a new line of service on an existing plan, the company is offering a pretty decent incentive to those who buy Android devices: $50 of Google Play credit with a device purchase.
Basically all Android devices that Big Blue sells are eligible, and it doesn't matter which type of "contract" you decide to go with – it works with both two-year agreements and AT&T Next.
HTC manages its Sense Android skin a bit differently than other OEMs do. It makes a big deal about the features each version includes, and actually updates old devices to the new UI, even if it takes a separate update to do it. The AT&T M7 got Android 4.4 a while back, but the updated Sense 6 is ready to go out today.
Of the Big Four American carriers, AT&T has the best selection of Android tablets available... which, admittedly, isn't saying much. Today their shallow ranks get bolstered by two new Samsung tablets, one in the original Galaxy Tab line (which is now the de facto budget option) and one in the new Pro series. The Galaxy Tab 4 10.1 and the Galaxy Note Pro 12.2 will be available on the carrier starting this Friday, June 6th.
The Galaxy S5 Active, Samsung's much-leaked ruggedized version of its latest flagship, is now official, and available from AT&T in three colors - Camo Green, Ruby Red, and Titanium Gray.
Just like the previous entry in the Active family, the S5 Active is water and dust resistant, and looks quite capable of taking some abuse. The S5 Active, as you may guess, is essentially the Galaxy S5 in a rougher, tougher chassis.
The wait is nearly over for anyone who kind of wants a tablet, but doesn't want to commit to having two whole devices. The Asus PadFone X has been "coming soon" for months now, but AT&T is finally setting a date – you can get your own phone/tablet hybrid on June 6th for $199, if you go for the traditional contract.